Rating: Adult. If you're under eighteen, please go elsewhere now.
Disclaimer: These characters belong to the CW and DC Comics, not to me.
Read Chapter 1 here.
How can you see into my eyes
Like open doors?
Leading you down into my core
Where I've become so numb
Without a soul
My spirit's sleeping somewhere cold
Until you find it there and lead it back
-Evanescence, "Bring Me to Life"
The bed shifted as she rose to her feet. He heard her heels clicking as she walked toward the window, and he lifted his head just a bit.
"Don't open the shade," he said hoarsely.
"It's dark in here. You'll feel better with some sunshine."
"Don't!" he snapped.
She paused, and then he heard the clicking as she approached the bed again. "You're trying to get rid of your powers," she said softly, sitting down next to him again. "Aren't you? That's what this is all about. If you stay out of the sunshine long enough, you'll lose all your strength."
Pain and tears welled up together. "I don't deserve my powers," he answered in a low voice.
"Clark..." She sighed, and he felt her gentle hand on his forehead again. "You can't get rid of them permanently, you know. The minute you go back out into the sunlight, they'll come back."
"I'll stay out of the sunlight."
"So you think I'm going to let you withdraw from the world and live in a bedroom for the rest of your life? Don't be ridiculous, Clark. That just isn't happening."
He closed his eyes, doing his best to shut her out. It had been so much easier to close out the world, to ignore everything and everyone, when she hadn't been here. He knew her well enough to know she wouldn't leave him alone. She'd pester and harass him until he got up and went back out into the light from sheer annoyance.
The problem was, he didn't deserve the gifts fate had given him. He'd failed the people of Metropolis, failed the people who'd expected Superman to save them. Because of him, twenty-two people were dead. The knowledge made the pain claw at his chest again, threatening to tear him apart.
He wasn't going back out into the sunlight. He just wasn't.
"Clark." She leaned over him again, pressing her face into his shoulder. "You can't blame yourself for this, okay? You didn't set those bombs. Deep down, you know it wasn't your fault."
He turned his face into the pillow and mumbled. "You don't understand."
"Oh, I understand perfectly." Through his t-shirt, he could feel her lips moving against his chest, and despite his desire to withdraw from the world, his body responded instinctively. "You always blame yourself when bad things happen, Clark. You always have. But what you don't get is that by withdrawing this way, you're actually causing more harm."
He just wanted to be left alone, yet her words sparked a curiosity in him. "What do you mean?"
"Come on, Clark. Be honest with yourself. How many people do you think you save in the course of a week? Isn't it more than twenty-two? How many people have been endangered this week, while you sulked in a dark bedroom and felt sorry for yourself?"
She couldn't have stunned him more if she'd slapped him. He opened his eyes and blinked into the darkness.
"I hadn't thought of it that way," he muttered at last, grudgingly.
"You haven't thought at all." Her voice was tart, but her arms went around him, warm and reassuring. "You reacted the same way you always do when bad things happen. You started moping, and the moping got out of control because I wasn't here to nip it in the bud."
He rolled over onto his back. Her head dropped onto his shoulder, and he put an arm around her.
"In a way," he said softly, "I guess you're right. But I just can't... I don't want to be responsible for people dying, Chlo. When I don't manage to save people... it hurts. It hurts so much I don't know how to cope with it."
She was silent a long moment.
"I don't know how that feels," she admitted at last. "I don't suppose anyone does, except you. You're Superman, Clark. That means that you can perform feats that no one else can... but even you can't save everyone. Remember what Jor-El used to say to you?"
Despite the terrible chill in his soul, he felt the corners of his mouth quirk up just a bit. He spoke in an artificially deep tone. "We are not gods, my son."
"Exactly. And despite the fact that Jor-El is a jerk and an asshole, he had a point. Even though you're Superman... you're just a man."
He sighed, and tears stung his eyes. "I don't think I can live with that, Chloe."
Her arms tightened around his ribcage.
"I don't think you have a choice, Clark."
Her lips brushed over his throat, and he felt a quiver of sexual interest go through him. He hadn't had sex with her in a week, and despite the dark grief staining his soul, his body was interested.
He gritted his teeth, trying to will away the desire that made his cock swell. He'd failed all those people, and he didn't want to be comforted, or pulled back into the land of the living. He just wanted to lie here and grieve quietly. He didn't want to walk back into the light.
But she didn't stop kissing him. Every kiss was a soft, gentle declaration of love, and within seconds he was painfully hard.
"Chlo," he whispered, fighting not to put his arms around her. "I can't go back out there. I can't."
"You have to." She nuzzled the hollow at the base of his throat. "The world needs you, Clark. And so do I."
He lay there for a moment longer, then suddenly he rolled her over and pinned her. Her arms went around his waist, her thighs around his hips, and before he even realized it his hands were grabbing the hem of her skirt and yanking it up around her waist, and his body was pressing eagerly into hers.
His hips moved against hers, in a hard, almost angry motion. With no exposure to sunshine, he'd lost most of his inhuman strength in the past week, and he could move against her without the fear of really hurting her. That knowledge, and the grief that lurked inside him, drove him, making him thrust against her violently.
"Clark." She kissed along his jawline, her voice soft and reassuring, and he knew that she could feel his despair and anguish. "It'll be all right."
"No." He snarled into her hair, because anger was the only thing keeping him from breaking down in sobs. "It isn't all right. They're dead. All of them. Dead."
"Clark..." She reached up, stroking his hair, and he knew he couldn't take the sympathy. He didn't want to cry in front of her. A terrible, conflicting mass of emotions stormed inside him, sorrow and guilt and sexual lust, all tumbling together in his chest, choking him. He caught her arms and pinned them over her head, holding her hands away from him.
"I don't want to talk about it," he said fiercely. "I just want to fuck you."
He jerked his hips against hers hard, feeling her heat, letting himself get lost in the physical sensations, because it was easier than grieving. If he could fuck her, he could forget everything he'd done, everything he'd failed to do, if only for a few minutes. For a brief span of time, he could lose his pain in the heat of her body. He could forget the twenty-two people he'd failed to save. He could forget everything.
Right now, that was all he really wanted.
Read Chapter 3 here.